photo by Alison White
We are now two days into February and less than two weeks away from Valentine's Day - the biggest day of the year for just about any gondola operation that has boats in the water through winter.
"V-day", as we often call it, is crazy, frenzied, chaotic and a Godsend.
In the middle of winter, when most gondoliers are tightening their belts,
the phones ring (and ring, and ring, and ring).
I sometimes refer to it as "that time when the wind blows in winter and all the nuts fall off the trees, so us squirrels can grab and store them to get through til spring".
Really, it's not just one day; it often becomes about a week of activity,
so a lot of us gondoliers do our best to pace ourselves,
stay as available as possibly,
and be in the best rowing shape we can be so when that extra cruise books at the end of the night after a full schedule and a long day of fighting the wind, we can give our passengers the same quality experience that we gave to the passengers on our first cruise.